Rising gas prices spike motorists' budget

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If you feel like gas prices are suddenly higher, you are right on the money. (WTVD)

If you feel like gas prices are suddenly higher, you are right on the money. Across the country, prices jumped 10 cents a gallon and higher overnight in some communities.

"Here we go again," said motorist Avery Graves. "I don't really want it to go back up to $3 or $4 [a gallon] because this is really saving me at least $60 a month."

A lot of motorists are asking what happened.

"I'm not sure just what is going on," said Charles Krick. "It may have something to do with what's going on in the Middle East."

Economist say pump prices are still tied to supply and demand. Right now, they say the U.S. has more supply of oil than demand. However, this is also the time of the year when oil companies shut down their refineries for maintenance. Plus, crude oil prices remain erratic.

Even a small jump in pump prices worries Tiffany West.

"I am an hourly employee," said West, "and I am a single mother. So I really work hard for my money and half of it goes into my gas tank."

According to GasBuddy.com, pump prices across North Carolina are fairly consistent -- from $1.80 to $2.24 a gallon in Charlotte to $2.03 to $2.15 in Wilmington. Many motorist worry how high prices will go and how fast.

Economists predict prices will average $2.50 a gallon by late spring. Even that many motorist say is better than last year this time when they were pumping gas that was more than $3 a gallon.

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